Soft play zone at Winnersh IQ gets go-aheadBy Victoria Smith
April 20, 2012
A new soft play centre could be open in Winnersh by the summer after planning bosses gave proposals the thumbs-up.
The centre at the IQ Winnersh business park is expected to create 10 full-time and 18 part-time jobs.
A planning application for a change of use from business and production to leisure for Unit 680 in Eskdale Road won approval from Wokingham Borough Council earlier this month.
The plan has been put together by Roni and Barry Zigner, owners of Kids’N’Action, to give families in the borough more choice for where to take children and hold parties.
Mrs Zigner, who has three children, said she was delighted the plan had been approved by the council and that there will now be negotiations to sign a lease, with a view to opening the centre in the summer.
The plan attracted one comment from Chris Coleman, who won planning permission from the borough council to open a similar centre in Headley Road East, Woodley, last year.
He pointed out that the borough already has two children’s soft play centres – the Woodley centre and one in Old Forest Road in Wokingham, and questioned the need for a third.
He also questioned whether the site’s 46 parking spaces was enough.
He said: “If parking is not adequate, which it clearly is not, then customers will start parking on the kerbs of the estate or wherever they can, causing safety issues for children walking around a very busy estate.”
In their planning application, Mr and Mrs Zigner included consultation research which showed parents in the area would use a soft play facility in Winnersh.
The council found the proposal will increase employment opportunities and diversify the IQ Winnersh employment site. It also found the area had good transport links with the nearby Winnersh Triangle railway station.
The new centre will feature play zones including a ‘city-scape’ where children can role-play in themed corners including a fire station and sports arena. There will also be slides, a sports area and tunnels.